According to healthsystemtracker.org, 1 in 4 people taking prescription drugs report difficulty affording their medication. Due to the rapidly increasing cost of medications, we as consumers must be more diligent about how we shop for our prescription drugs. Whether you are filling a single prescription or require daily medications, the ability to save money is there!
Here are 8 ways to ensure you are getting the best price on your medications…
1. Talk to Your Doctor About Cost
Let your doctor know that you are concerned about safety, quality AND cost. Ask them for generic options and other ways to keep the costs down, such as purchasing double strength pills and splitting them to cut down on the price and is a safe option.
2. Ask About Alternatives to Medications
While you’re talking with your doctor, be sure you discuss all non-prescription drug alternatives that may be applicable. Could you reduce the number or the amount of medications you are taking by incorporating changes to your diet and exercise? Are there any therapeutic or homeopathic alternatives? Check with your primary care physician for safe alternatives.
3. Educate Yourself on Your Insurance Benefits
Your insurance has a list of medications that the drug plan will cover; this is referred to as a formulary. Familiarize yourself with this list before filling any prescriptions and check for requirements that your insurer may have before covering certain medications.
4. Check to See if Your Insurer Has a Preferred Pharmacy
While you are digging through the fine print of your insurance’s drug plan benefits, check to see if they have a preferred pharmacy.
5. Use Mail Order Options When Available
If you take regular medications, check to see if receiving your prescriptions through a mail order option could save you money.
6. Shop Around for the Best Price
There are plenty of online resources that will allow you to compare the cost of medications in your area. Take a minute to see if you could be saving money based on where you decide to fill your prescription. Sites like GoodRx.com and BlinkHealth.com make it easy for consumers to shop for the best prices on their prescription drugs. You can also download the free app, ScriptSave from Wellrx.com to use on the go!
7. “Clip” Coupons
Remember those helpful resources I just gave you above? They also provide discount coupons and additional savings. They are free to use and there are no membership fees.
8. Ask for the Cash Pay Price
Always ask the pharmacy for the price without insurance. Compare the cash pay price to what you would end up paying through your insurance, especially if you have a high deductible plan. You may find that the cash pay price is cheaper than your copay.
That’s it! You’ve got the basics on how to shop smart for your prescription drugs. Want to take your savings to the next level? Shop for all your medical procedures too! Did you know that you can end up paying hundreds, even thousands of dollars more for the same medical procedure based on the facility you go to? Check healthcarebluebook.com to educate yourself about fair prices for medical procedures and where you can go to get the Fair Price.